The Kenya National Federation of sugar cane farmers’ Deputy Chairman, Charles Etyang has supported the privatization of state owned sugar companies, saying it will improve farmer’s earnings from cane deliveries.
He said the state owned companies still owe farmers million of shillings despite supplying them with several tones of cane.
Chemelil and Muhoroni Sugar Companies owe farmers Sh. 260 and 350 Million respectively. This has led to untold suffering among farmers, he said.
He stated that once privatization takes off, farmers will be able to improve their economic fortunes. Sugar companies that are due for privatization are Sony, Nzoia, Miwani, Chemilil and Muhoroni.
He added that besides, the proposed privatization is expected to improve the factories operations and make them economically viable.
Speaking in Muhoroni constituency on Wednesday, he urged the county government of Kisumu to sensitize farmers to save some earnings to enable them buy shares when the companies are privatized.
We want the government to privatize the mills and at the same time empower the farmers by reserving some shares for them, he said.
The sugar factories serve farmers in Kisumu, Kisii, Bungoma, Narok, Migori, Homa Bay, Kakamega, Kericho, Busia and Nandi counties.
The official also said that sugar cane farmers had rejected zoning and will not accept it whether it is supported by the government or not.
Let it be crystal clear that farmers will not entertain zoning. This is a ploy to short change farmers who should be given free choice of selling their canes to any miller, he said.
Source: Kenya News Agency